Three points are the priority for Chelsea against a Norwich City side who have started the season well enough. Will Lampard opt for a 4-2-3-1 or a 4-3-3 or maybe something different altogether? Big decision await.
THE PREDICTED LINEUP
Kepa Arrizabalaga may have had some wobbly moments against Leicester City, but there’s no doubting that he will continue to be one of the first names on the team sheet.
Frank Lampard mentioned in his press conference that the game still comes too early for Antonio Rüdiger so I’d be very surprised if we don’t see Andreas Christensen and Kurt Zouma start together at centre-back once more. Emerson and Cesar Azpilicueta complete the back four, as they have in all three games so far.
N’Golo Kanté’s sustained an ankle injury during the week and is doubtful for this game. As a result, I expect us to go with a pairing of Jorginho and Mateo Kovačić in the double pivot. If Lampard were to go with a 4<4>2 (diamond) formation, then we could also see Ross Barkley return to the lineup.
After starting on the bench over the weekend, Tammy Abraham will likely get the nod ahead of Olivier Giroud, with Mason Mount, Pedro, and Christian Pulisic starting behind him, just as in the last two games. Willian should be in line for increased minutes as well, but perhaps not quite from the start just yet.
Arrizabalaga | Emerson, Zouma, Christensen, Azpilicueta (c) | Jorginho, Kovačić | Pulisic, Mount, Pedro | Abraham
THE PEOPLE’S CHOICE
The choice of formation was a close call for the WAGNH community, with the 4-3-3 narrowly edging out the 4-2-3-1 (44%). It was an even closer race for the centre forward spot, with Bathsuayi, Abraham (33%), and Giroud (34%) splitting the vote into almost even thirds. Little doubt about any of the other starters, with Kovačić (41%), Barkley (29%), Rüdiger (27%), and Willian (22%) leading the rest of the pack.
Arrizabalaga (99%) | Emerson (89%), Zouma (75%), Christensen (91%), Azpilicueta (91%) | Mount (74%), Jorginho (79%), Kanté (97%) | Pulisic (89%), Batshuayi (36%), Pedro (63%)
MY PREFERRED LINEUP
Same as the people’s choice: Michy Batshuayi, whether in a 4-3-3 or in a 4<4>2, deserves his chance as Chelsea have been struggling in the goals department. Also, I’m counting on Kanté being the superhuman that he is in order to pass his fitness test.
Arrizabalaga | Emerson, Zouma, Christensen, Azpilicueta | Mount, Jorginho, Kanté | Pulisic, Batshuayi, Pedro
COME ON, YOU BLUES!!!